With the exception of the Resurrection, the Triumphal Entry stands out as a lone “happy moment” in the sorrowful series of events that led directly to Jesus’ suffering and death on Golgotha. The Savior’s famous ride into Jerusalem serves as a popular event to celebrate the beginning of Holy Week and, as a result, an event we sacred composers frequently set to music. Over my career, I’ve written no less than a ten unique Triumphal Entry/Hosanna songs myself.*
In Luke’s account of the moment, he records a fascinating exchange between Jesus and the Pharisees. The Pharisees chastised the raucous impropriety of Jesus’ followers, and told Jesus to rebuke his noisy disciples. Jesus’ response to his challengers was intriguing. He said, “I tell you, if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”
I love that answer.
The praise of God and his Son will not be contained. If His children fail to praise Him, then nature itself, right down to the very rocks, will do the job for us. So, let’s not stay quiet. Let’s make some noise.
* My most recent musical commemoration of this Palm Sunday moment is a song titled “Let the Rocks Cry Out.” (Harold Flammer 35027655) The rhythmic, syncopated chorus captures the celebratory atmosphere of the Triumphal entry, while the verses share what I hope are the reasons we sing.